Riding on the coattails of 2017’s increasingly progressive entertainment scene comes Ria Mae‘s video for ‘Red Light,’ a heartbreak anthem cleverly disguised as a dance track.
The song is a single from her ‘My Love‘ EP, released in November. The video follows two women reminiscing on better times in their relationship as it potentially comes to an end. It flits between scenes of laughter and playing in the snow to arguments and silent car rides. A red light washes over the scenes of strife, making the contrast in the relationship all the more jarring and tying in nicely with the song title.
As stated before, the song itself holds a lot of pain in the lyrics, but that could easily be missed when taking it at face value. Sure, the vocals are haunting and filled with hurt, but the production features a consistent beat and catchy chorus. The combination leaves the listener with an existential crisis: ‘Should I be dancing or crying right now?’
The song contributes to Mae’s rising recognition as a Canadian LGBT pop star. She toured with Canadian icons Tegan and Sara as an opening act in their European tour last year, and collaborated with Tegan Quin on her song ‘Broken’, also on the ‘My Love’ EP. Mae is extremely open about her sexuality, working hard to provide representation in a scene dominated by straight entertainment. She weaves this into her songwriting, videos and social media presence.
As for her musical style, it’s rhythmic; it’s something that can be easily danced to even when the lyrical content is sad and hopeless. Her influence from Tegan and Sara is clear, while still holding its own unique sound. ‘My Love’ showcases a movement towards a more hip-hop inspired sound compared to her self-titled release in 2016.
‘Red Light’ is a great ear worm to start 2018 off with, even if it will have you flashing back to painful breakups.